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Auto Equipment Articles

How Much Does a Car Lift Cost?

Author: Ashley Smith

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Auto Lift Prices

Auto lifts are a necessity for most vehicle repair shops, dealerships, and collision centers. They make repairs easier and more efficient. Buying an auto lift requires a significant investment - anywhere from $1,500 to more than $10,000. Nevertheless, a quality lift can last a lifetime, and that investment will eventually be recouped in additional revenue.


About Auto Lifts

Auto lifts are available in a variety of sizes and configurations. Some are designed for cars and light trucks, others for large trucks and buses, and others for smaller vehicles like motorcycles and ATVs.

  • Two-post surface mounted lifts are sufficient for most cars and light trucks. A vehicle is driven into the bay, the lifting arms are positioned underneath the car, and the lift is hoisted into the air.
  • Four-post surface mounted lifts are also suited for cars and light trucks, but they have a higher load capacity. Unlike two-post versions, vehicles are driven right onto the lift, which saves time.
  • In-ground lifts are ideal for saving space in your bays. They fold completely into the ground when not in use, clearing space to park cars.
  • Parallelogram and scissor lifts are high capacity lifts designed for large vehicles such as box trucks and buses. Vehicles are driven directly onto the lift.

Car Lift Average Costs

In general, the higher the lift capacity, the more you can expect to pay:

  • Two-post and four-post lifts with a 10,000 capacity range in price from about $1,500 to $3,500. For 14,000-pound capacity models, budget $3,000 to $6,000.
  • In-ground lifts usually cost $6,000 to $10,000. They cost significantly more because of the extra technology that is required and the difficulty of installation.
  • Parallelogram and scissor lifts usually run $10,000 or more.

Sometimes installation is included in the price of an auto lift. If not, it’s usually fairly inexpensive. A two-post lift might cost $300 to $500 to install, while a four-post lift would likely run $750 to $1,000. For parallelogram and scissor lifts, the cost increases to $1,000 to $1,500.

Auto Lift Safety and Preparation

Safety should be your top concern when you’re in the market for an auto lift. There are inherent risks in lifting a vehicle weighing thousands of pounds above your head, and it’s important to minimize those risks as much as possible. Choose a lift that is ALI/ETL certified. And don’t base your decision solely on price. It’s not worth risking an accident to save a few hundred dollars.

Before you start talking to auto lift dealers, arm yourself with a few pieces of information. Decide what kind of load capacity you’ll need - erring on the higher end. You’ll also need to know the measurements of your bay, the thickness of the concrete floor and the number of pounds per square foot the floor can support.

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